Homes

Strutt for Sale — Inside a Landmark Modernist House in Alta Vista

James Strutt was both a prolific architect and a bon vivant. As a designer, he was known for imagining beautifully flowing spaces with distinctive undulating roofs and large expanses of glass that let the light flow through.

As an early version of the celebrity architect, he hosted chic cocktail parties at his own spectacular residence, with Pierre Trudeau a frequent guest. 

Around town, he designed unique churches, a few government buildings, and a smattering of iconic private residences.

Local architectural geeks with some spare cash now have the rare opportunity to fulfil a life goal — to live in a James Strutt-designed dwelling. The Weiner Residence is up for sale. 

Photos by Greg Tilley, Yell It Media

The House: Think of it as a time capsule of sorts. It’s a beautiful example of mid-century architecture, the bungalow was designed in 1958 for Paul and Eleanor Weiner. From the front, the marble-clad house resembles a pagoda, with clerestory windows under raised roofs. Sunlight streams in all day long. Even more light pours in through a series of skylights framed with red cedar.

A spectacular central foyer with terrazzo flooring is made for cocktail parties. Ditto the sunken living room. Visitors would do well to spend time taking in the raised ceilings, perfect room proportions, wood detailing and — it is January, after all — the original wood-burning fireplace surrounded by built-ins.

Photos by Greg Tilley, Yell It Media

Fame Partied Here: Apparently ol’ blue eyes Frank Sinatra hung out here, as did extravagant showman Liberace.

Notable Owners: Originally built for the Weiners, it was acquired in 1970 by Kathleen Ryan, a business leader who hosted the likes of Sinatra and Liberace at her grand parties. Charlotte Whitton, Ottawa’s first female mayor and the sister of Kathleen, lived in the home in her later years.

Photos by Greg Tilley, Yell It Media

The Specs: About 3,800 square feet on the main level; 2,000 square feet in the basement.

Asking Price: $1.365 million

Open House: Fittingly, listing agents Lyne Burton and Dominique Milne (Engel and Völkers Brokerage) will showcase the Weiner Residence with a 1960s-style party. Home-grown crooner Johnny Vegas will be on hand to set the mood with Frank Sinatra tunes. Thursday, January 31 from 5 p.m. – 8 p.m., 418 Roger Rd. Itching to take a look? You must RSVP to homes@lyneanddominique.com